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in an election year, one number has many interpretations. president obama told a fairfax, virginia, crowd this: >> this morning, we found out that the unemployment rate has fallen to its lowest level since i took office. [ applause and cheers ] >> reporter: he said there's more work to be done to help middle class families and said that's why he is running for re- election. >> today's news certainly is not an excuse to try to talk down the economy to score a few political points. >> reporter: mitt romney told supporters in virginia the country hasn't mer enough. >> now, we can do better. we don't have to stay on the path we have been on. >> reporter: businesses added 114,000 jobs in september slower than the growth earlier in the summer. romney pointed out the unemployment rate doesn't reflect people who stopped looking for work. >> if the same share of people were participating until the workforce today as on the day that the president got elected, why, our unemployment rate would be around 11%. >> reporter: 8.8 million lost jobs during the recession. just under half of those jobs have been a
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